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Arts festival fun kicks off

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By Euan Maxwell
Arts festival fun kicks off

FESTIVAL fever has hit the region — and there’s still time to join the jamboree.

In what has been for many local acts the first opportunity to get back on stage in over a year, the opening week of Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival has gone-off with a bang.

And there remains an entire weekend of music, dance and theatre for audiences to enjoy both online and in-person.

Three showings of the lockdown-inspired ‘Distance Remaining’ will be livestreamed as part of the ‘Festival At Hame’ programme each day from Friday to Sunday (July 23-25). The Melen Milne Productions play sees “three lost souls make a break for freedom and embark on a journey of discovery”. “But it’s 2020,” the descriptor adds, “and no journey is as simple as A to B – even to the front door.”

Meanwhile, a sold-out homecoming show from The Lucky Doves at Dumfries’ Theatre Royal will be broadcast online as part of the festival’s virtual component. The show will go live on Saturday at 10 pm.

Furthermore, a trio of pub quizzes are being hosted across the weekend by Lee and Andrea Medd, of Goose’s Quizzes. The battle of the wits will comprised of five rounds including one focusing on local knowledge.

The festival’s travelling stage, The Talking Horse, will roll-up to Dumfries on Saturday with performances from The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists and Kate Kyle and Sarah Law, before moving on to Castle Douglas on Sunday, where it will host the likes of The Ramblin’ Hedgepigs, Liam ‘Rusty’ Russell and Chelsie Nash and a solo set by Kate Kyle.

Melanie Purdie, Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival’s strategic and creative director, said following the launch of the festival last week: “Dumfries and Galloway has a thriving cultural scene and the Arts Festival remains a vital component of Scotland’s arts calendar each year. With so many artists from the region being unable to perform over the past 18 months, we recognise and celebrate the burgeoning creatives this summer.

“It marks the start of a highly anticipated return to theatre, gigs and shows that we can’t wait to bring to audiences over the next ten days and beyond with our year-round Arts Live programme.”

Explore the programme and book tickets for the remaining shows at


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